Video Game Talk The Place to talk about and trade Video & PC Games
View Poll Results: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?
Yes, the ability to add more power sounds great!
0
0%
No, this will never work!
50.00%
Maybe
50.00%
I don't get it.
0
0%
Voters: 6. You may not vote on this poll

Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

Old 03-01-16, 03:55 PM
  #1  
DVD Talk Godfather
Thread Starter
 
fumanstan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Irvine, CA
Posts: 55,343
Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

A lot of articles online today about some comments Phil Spencer made recently about the possibility of hardware upgrades in the middle of a generation in a way that compatibility wouldn't be an issue. From this Polygon article:

http://www.polygon.com/2016/3/1/1112...ncer-microsoft

"We see on other platforms whether it be mobile or PC that you get a continuous innovation that you rarely see on console," he said. "Consoles lock the hardware and the software platforms together at the beginning of the generation. Then you ride the generation out for seven or so years, while other ecosystems are getting better, faster, stronger. And then you wait for the next big step function.

"When you look at the console space, I believe we will see more hardware innovation in the console space than we've ever seen. You'll actually see us come out with new hardware capability during a generation allowing the same games to run backward and forward compatible because we have a Universal Windows Application running on top of the Universal Windows Platform that allows us to focus more and more on hardware innovation without invalidating the games that run on that platform."

"We can effectively feel a little bit more like we see on PC, where I can still go back and run my old Doom and Quake games that I used to play years ago but I can still see the best 4K games come out and my library is always with me. Hardware innovation continues while the software innovation is able to take advantage and I don't have to jump a generation and lose everything that I played on before."
There aren't a lot more details then that and Spencer was vague in the followup questions in that article I mentioned.

The big difference that Spencer seems to be striving for is that rather then hardware accessories or addons that past consoles have had where games only work if you have that particular hardware, it sounds like he's striving for an option where games would work regardless. I imagine it would be like a PC, where an upgraded console would allow options for better graphics/resolution/frame rate then the base version. Heck, I know there are some recent laptops that offer an external video card add on to boost gaming performance.

Would this work? Would consumers buy in to it? Would they just be confused? How many questions would this cause OldBoy to ask?
fumanstan is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 04:03 PM
  #2  
DVD Talk Ultimate Edition
 
Kedrix's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Katy, Tx
Posts: 4,423
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

No..double no, and triple no. I got out of the PC for gaming bullcrap after I got out of college. I sure the heck don't want to get back into it for a console . While the compatibility issue is nice, it's still a problem of whether knowing my machine needs to see best results with (X) part, upgraded or not. Could I figure it out? Sure. Do I want to figure it out? Not as much anymore, and in between juggling my family life and my gaming/writing, I just want something I can play...period.
Kedrix is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 04:08 PM
  #3  
Dan
DVD Talk Legend
 
Dan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: \_(ツ)_/
Posts: 18,931
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

Originally Posted by fumanstan View Post
How many questions would this cause OldBoy to ask?
I am petitioning against Microsoft going forward with this for this sole reason. Phil Spencer has no idea.

Anyway...
It's an interesting idea. It really has to be relatively seamless for the "average user" or it'll never work.

Buy a game, pop it in, (install for 40 goddamn minutes, download patch for 4 hours), play.

I imagine the plan would be to have the content smart enough to see what hardware is attached, and run version X or Y or Z of the game based on that.
- Base model Xbox One? You get version X which is may be 1080p/30fps.
- Base model with GPU add-on? You get version Y with better field of view and framerate.
- Base model with dual-GPU add-on? You get version Z with all of the above plus in 4K.

But the games themselves would need to work on ALL versions. Most casuals (filthy, filthy casuals) just care that the game works and isn't choppy as shit. Meet those needs for all games, and you're good. The add-ons would be for people who want "a bit more" from the console.

If they could replace the power brick with a "Power brick + GPU" I'd be interested... but I don't want extra chunks of hardware on my shelf.


I just don't see this working out, though.
Dan is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 04:22 PM
  #4  
DVD Talk Godfather
Thread Starter
 
fumanstan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Irvine, CA
Posts: 55,343
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

As for me, I voted Maybe since I love the idea but i'm not confident in the execution and part of me would expect Microsoft to botch the launch of such a concept.

As someone who's a PC Gamer in addition to owning a PS4 and XBox One, the power of those consoles disappointed me at launch and knowing that there would be an additional 5 years of games locked to those specs kind of sucks. If they can make it work, an add on that could boost resolution or frame rate, or even detail level, sounds great to me.
fumanstan is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 04:40 PM
  #5  
DVD Talk Legend
 
bluetoast's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 10,469
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

Nintendo did it with a modem for the NES, N64 Disc Drive (in Japan) and the Expansion Pak.
bluetoast is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 04:41 PM
  #6  
DVD Talk Hero
 
davidh777's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Home of 2013 NFL champion Seahawks
Posts: 40,676
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

The poll question is kind of loaded. I think the concept would work (as someone who just games on consoles these days), but the execution would have to work as well.
davidh777 is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 04:57 PM
  #7  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: Formerly known as Groucho AND Bandoman/Death Moans, Iowa
Posts: 16,632
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

It worked so well for Sega.
majorjoe23 is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 05:12 PM
  #8  
DVD Talk Reviewer/ Admin
 
Adam Tyner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Greenville, South Cackalack
Posts: 20,985
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

Polygon seems to be pushing the "upgrade individual components" angle in their article, while other recaps make it sound more like a phone/tablet model: the older stuff is still supported (for a long while, anyway), new hardware hits stores with some regularity, and your account/software carries over when you move up. It's definitely open to interpretation, but I think the latter is more likely than the former. If that shakes out, it's more iPhone/iPad than 32X.
Adam Tyner is online now  
Old 03-01-16, 05:22 PM
  #9  
DVD Talk Godfather
Thread Starter
 
fumanstan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Irvine, CA
Posts: 55,343
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

Originally Posted by bluetoast View Post
Nintendo did it with a modem for the NES, N64 Disc Drive (in Japan) and the Expansion Pak.
Originally Posted by majorjoe23 View Post
It worked so well for Sega.
I tried pointing this out in my original post that these wouldn't really be apt comparisons, since with these devices there were games that were only playable if you owned a DD, Sega CD, or 32 X, no?

Originally Posted by Adam Tyner View Post
Polygon seems to be pushing the "upgrade individual components" angle in their article, while other recaps make it sound more like a phone/tablet model: the older stuff is still supported (for a long while, anyway), new hardware hits stores with some regularity, and your account/software carries over when you move up. It's definitely open to interpretation, but I think the latter is more likely than the former. If that shakes out, it's more iPhone/iPad than 32X.
Good point, that's why I eliminated Polygon's own commentary in my original post and only had Spencer's quote. People seem trained to spend hundreds of dollars every 1-2 years on a new phone or tablet, knowing their apps are still compatible. For some reason I think consumers would have trouble buying in to it with consoles, at least depending on how far apart the updates are.

Then again, Nintendo has done it a few times essentially with their handhelds.
fumanstan is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 06:36 PM
  #10  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
JTH182's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 5,122
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

With how fast technology advances it really is odd to think we console gamers spend 5+ years on one non-upgradeable system. On the other hand, upgrades have never really seemed to be successful. The N64 expansion pak was mildly successful I guess, at least from an ease if use aspect.

A fully modular, plug and play system could be a cool experiment. Not sure it would go over though.
JTH182 is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 06:51 PM
  #11  
DVD Talk Limited Edition
 
Join Date: May 2001
Location: Nashville TN
Posts: 7,345
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

Only if it was a hardware version of "Plug & Play" that could be done by the consumer/owner without the need of sending the unit back. I wouldn't want to see a total upgrade but maybe something like a better video chip board and more RAM become available via a separate board you could swap.
K&AJones is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 07:25 PM
  #12  
DVD Talk Legend
 
mattysemo247's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 11,959
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

I wish it was an option, but it's not going to happen.
mattysemo247 is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 08:09 PM
  #13  
Member
 
Brack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: near Cincinnati
Posts: 9,504
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

Current gen is almost 2.5 years deep. With the push of 4K media finally starting to make a dent this year, we might as well just wait 2-3 years from now for new consoles. I'd be annoyed if I "upgraded" my current system if an Xbox2/PS5 was only 2 years away afterwards.
Brack is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 08:36 PM
  #14  
DVD Talk Special Edition
 
Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 1,765
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

Wouldn't work for me. Although I've been a gamer of sorts for 35+ years if they start making games available that only work if you have upgraded your console I'm out. That's why I jumped out of PC gaming, I couldn't keep up.

For me it's bad enough to buy a new game for the current gen and pop it in and then wait for an hour before I can even play it. For example, I was excited to start playing Dying Light in my backlog because my wife and daughter were going to be gone for a couple hours and I would have the house to myself. By the time it updated and installed I got less than 30 minutes in. It's getting close enough to pc gaming already.
Barth is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 09:02 PM
  #15  
DVD Talk Godfather
Thread Starter
 
fumanstan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Irvine, CA
Posts: 55,343
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

Originally Posted by Barth View Post
Wouldn't work for me. Although I've been a gamer of sorts for 35+ years if they start making games available that only work if you have upgraded your console I'm out. That's why I jumped out of PC gaming, I couldn't keep up.
The whole point here is that wouldn't be the case, everything would be forward/backwards compatible.
fumanstan is offline  
Old 03-01-16, 09:16 PM
  #16  
DVD Talk Reviewer/ Admin
 
Adam Tyner's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 1999
Location: Greenville, South Cackalack
Posts: 20,985
Re: Would Console Hardware Upgrades Work?

Originally Posted by fumanstan View Post
The whole point here is that wouldn't be the case, everything would be forward/backwards compatible.
For a few years, sure, but there'll be a point where new games can't be played on old hardware.
Adam Tyner is online now  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.